A Management System for Video Encoders

Case Study Introduction

The following describes a product that I shaped the UX design for from inception through 16 on-premise software releases.

What is it? A management system for clusters of video encoder systems, designed for 1000s of channels.

User InfoOperators run channels and systems. They care about stability, getting clear feedback and information. Engineers refine video encoder settings. They care about precision, predictable outcomes and performance.

Why work on this? An existing legacy management product had challenges of scale, complexity, and stability.

Mission: Design a new version of the product.

Case Study 1: Redundancy Design

ContextRedundancy is about backing up systems to keep channels running.

ProblemEach channel had its own redundancy setting. But users wrangled spreadsheets to maintain them.

ProcessListened to service engineers tasked with setting up and maintaining such systems. Worked through wireframes and user stories with engineers and product managers.

LearningsUsers thought of their redundancy planning in terms of nodes (machines). The flexibility of channel-level settings was a burden.

SolutionDesigned a ‘system based’ redundancy model, so that an entire node would be backed up by another.

OutcomesBesides receiving positive feedback from customers on the subject of redundancy management, the model became a great tool for managing system upgrades.

Case Study 2: Bulk Updates

ContextUsers need to make operation updates to many channels.

ProblemUsers told of stopping 100s of channels with 100s of clicks in the legacy system. It was lots of effort, with lots of risk for error.

ProcessListened to service engineers and users on pain points of legacy system. Discovered that bulk operations was missing. Studied existing models from Gmail, Jira, and other large scale systems. Designed and iterated a bulk update operational flow through wireframes, user stories.

LearningsDesigning a consistent experience for various task flows was a challenge. But it was key to user happiness and operational stability.

SolutionProvided wireframes and user flows to design team. Worked through technical constraints and UX decisions. Enhanced search and sort for users to define what they would be updating.

OutcomesBulk operations allowed users to manage operational tasks with clarity and confidence. The feature supported other UX flows, including fixed profile management.